Economic Implosion is bad news for world's Poorest

Well it’s official. The UN site, IRIN, posted a report from Dakar citing analyses and forecasts by UN economists on the likely impact of the downturn in the West on the situation of Africa’s poorest and most vulnerable children. Infant morality is set to rise quite dramatically due to the collapse of funding for major projects. Add to this the escalating situation in the Sudan where NGOS who are providing key humanitarian aid are being expelled. Many foresee humanitarian disasters on an unparalleled scale.

World Bank Analysis

In studying economic, health and governance data for 45 sub-Saharan African countries from 1975-2005, World Bank senior economist Jorge Arbache found that during multi-year economic collapses, infant deaths increased on average by almost three percent, from 86 deaths per 1,000 live births to 114.

The World Bank calculates that some 28 million children are born in Africa every year, which would mean up to 700,000 more deaths because of the recession, which is caused in part by risky US mortgage lending, said Arbache.

The economist told IRIN people have underestimated the toll the recession will have on Africa’s poorest countries. “Yes, they are relatively more shielded from international markets, but the fact is sub-Saharan Africa is all the more vulnerable because of its dependence on money from overseas. A spike in infant deaths will not be immediate, but increased mortality is inevitable in the current economic climate.”

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